Frequently Asked Questions About Generators - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Frequently Asked Questions About Generators


How much power do I need?
What kind should I get

If you’re thinking of adding a back up power system to your home, here are some things you should consider.

How much power do I need?
If you only want to run your freezer, a few light bulbs, or a small fan, then a small portable generator may work just fine. (35,000 watts or 3.5KW). Remember you will have to keep filling it up with gasoline every few hours and gas stations maybe closed during an emergency.

One other downside are the noise & safety issues.  You must NEVER run a generator indoors or in your garage! Your families’ safety is at risk if fumes escape into your attic and into your house. This also means your neighbor will have to deal with the noise of your generator running outside.  You should also consider securing the generator to prevent theft.

If you want more power to run appliances, you may want to consider a full size gasoline generator, capable of generating at least 15,000 watts (commonly referred to as 15KW) This will power AC units, microwaves and TV’s but, will take up more space when you are not using it.  You can expect to pay upwards of $2,000 for these compared to a few hundred dollars for a 5KW. You can also have a professional electrician permanently hard-wire it to your homes electrical system for easier use.

If you already know you want a full house back up system, you may want to consider a natural gas or propane system. If your home already has natural gas service this is an excellent option.  You may also use propane to avoid having to run additional natural gas piping.  Propane tanks may be buried near by for safe easy installation.  While these units are typically more expensive up front, savings are realized down the road through efficiency and ease of use.


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